Classical civs political developmentPresentation Transcript
Classical Civilizations – Political Developments
The Dynasties and Empires China Qin Han India Mauryan Gupta Mediterranean Persian Empire City-States of Greece Alexander’s Conquests Roman Empire
Political Developments-Persia Centralized Authority of an Absolute monarch… Ruled by the will of the Persian god Ahura Mazda Ruled over 35 million people-respected diverse cultural traditions of subject people Appointed governors in each of the empire’s 23 provinces Ruled over an imperial bureaucracy (administrators, tax collectors, record keepers)
Political Developments-Persia Standardized coinage Taxes “Royal Road” Imperial Centers-Grand cities that became symbols of imperial authority.
Political Developments-Qin & Han Central authority controlled . . . Appointment of governors *Standardization iron, salt, and silk trade Religion Unified written language Expansion of bureaucracy Used military to expand and control empire Education and examination system created a scholar gentry class of government workers.
Political Developments-Qin & Han Mandate of Heaven Dynastic Cycle continued Emperors used status as “Son of Heaven” to reinforce their rule Assimilated non-Chinese culturally, linguistically, and through intermarriage
Political Developments in Rome – Central Authority (Republic-Imperial Rule) Emperor and Rome had authority (previously Senate and two consuls) Military power kept stability (military power also built the empire) Upper class bureaucracy Assimilation through Citizenship (to conquered people)
Political Developments in Mediterranean Local rulers maintained regional rule with Roman oversight-not as centralized as China Emperors used religion to increase their authority Diversity in religious beliefs and languages Local trade relatively unrestricted – except for the trade of grains Unlike China, Romans had an elaborate collection of written laws (good men vs. good laws)
The Collapse of Empire-Rome and Han China-Common Factors Too big-overextended Too expensive to maintain Large landowning families diminish power of central authority Epidemic disease Threat from nomadic/pastoral people on frontier regions of empire
The Collapse of Empire-Rome and Han China-Common Factors Decline of urban life (cities) Contracting population (it gets smaller) Less area under cultivation (less food) Diminishing international trade Insecurity for ordinary people
The Collapse of Empire-Rome and Han China-The Differences Rome No large scale, centralized authority ever rules over W. Europe for any significant time…ever! Han China After several hundred years, a new dynasty emerges with a single emperor, a bureaucracy selected by education and exams, and Confucian beliefs
INDIAN Political Developments-Regionalism of Mauryan & Gupta “Independent” regional rulers Diversity in religious/cultural beliefs and languages Local trade relatively unrestricted-Center of Indian Ocean trade networks. Some state-run industries (spinning, weaving, mining, shipbuilding, and weapons)
INDIAN Political Developments-Regionalism of Mauryan & Gupta Identity comes from religious tradition (Hinduism) and a unique social organization (caste) Caste structured society more than any imperial authority could! Mauryan Empire DID have…large military forces and a civilian bureaucracy (taxes)
Some Similarities… Centralized Monarchies-Exceptions? Bureaucracy-Most extensive? Investment in Public Works-Examples? Ability to tax Military Religion reinforced political authority-Examples?
Political Developments in Persia,India, China, and the Mediterranean
Military conquest and
expansion of territory.
Political Developments in Persia, India, China, and the Mediterranean Central government sponsored public works projects (Integration of empire)